The best free lean magazine I know of, Industry Week, recently discussed an interesting survey done by LifeCare Inc. where they investigated why some employees underperform in their jobs.
While I am from the school that says you need to take most surveys with a grain of salt since they are often biased based on who is asked to respond, I did find these results particularly interesting.
As the above graph shows (click to enlarge it) the number 1 reason employees often underperform (two years running I might add) is the employee felt overloaded and didn’t have enough time to finish all tasks. The second reason (aside from ‘other’) was that basic job expectations were not made clear.
If, for example, we learn it takes a trained person working at a comfortable pace 30 minutes to complete a task we can easily see asking them to complete 19 of these tasks (570 minutes or 9.5 hours of work) in an 8 hour day is unrealistic (and unfair).
What other ideas do you have for helping employees escape the torture of muri?